Sunday, February 3, 2013

Clean up Lesson and Prep Work: Underpainting

Yesterday I varnished four paintings ready to go to new homes (yay!).  I used a favorite wide flat brush to keep the finish smooth.  It did beautifully! I rinsed it out thoroughly and set it out to dry.  Well, I thought I rinsed it thoroughly...  

I picked it up tonight for underpainting a few new canvases (Cadmium fave!) and the brush was stiff as a board!!  After a flash of despair at possibly losing one of my favorite brushes, I got out the Pink Soap and went to the sink.  After a good fifteen minutes of swishing and washing, the bristles were nearly free again!  Whew!  So now the brush is soaking for a while to free up the last bits of varnish.  
Hoping for the Best...

So on to the prep work.  I learned several years ago that a stark white canvas can be less than inspiring...scary even!  So I started painting a light color wash first thing.  Used rinse water worked pretty well just to break up that blank white space.  My art mentor, Jill shared a similar concept of underpainting, but with a vibrant color (like Cadmium fave!).  This really makes the painting "glow".  I'm hooked!  9 out of last 10 acrylic paintings are underpainted Cadmium Yellow.  So perhaps an upcoming challenge for me is to try a new underpainting color...?  Stay tuned :-) 

Cad. Yellow Underpainting!

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